Humankind - eternally evolving!
From ice age to stone age to modern age, from hunting-gathering to agriculture to industrial, from kingdoms to democracy, from loot to trade, from mythology to science to technology... - that's how we rolled.
The Variation Question
Every era has moulded the human lifestyle uniquely. Survival instincts have given way to desires of infinite luxuries and immortality. Human brain is no longer just an organ of defense - it has learnt to extract patterns out of randomness, sense out of non-sense, and meaning out of emptiness. Now we think, act and improve till we achieve perfection. Such is the collective idiosyncrasies of this human species that it has surpassed all other species in progress and prosperity? Isn't it?
However, the question that remains is unlike other species why is there so much variance between two humans - racial, physical, habitual, financial, moral, political or cultural?
Mostly, the question is about the variation in attributes.
The Defining Attributes
Attributes that define and differentiate humans can be broadly categorized as follows -
Fundamental - are those natural attributes that do not depend on one's effort. For e.g. racial.
Derived - are the attributes that one develops or improves upon in one's lifetime. For e.g. financial.
The Decisions that Formed, Shaped and Stayed
What decisions triggered and manifested such variance in our attributes? Who made these? Why? The answers can be mind-bogglingly complex just like the question. Anyways the universe itself is so complex that it is futile to find simplicity so easily. But the quest never ends.
So, a simplified approach follows -
Let there be extremes of climatic and geographical conditions across different regions.
Result - Races.
The Decision Maker - Laws of Physics.
Let there be 2 sub species - man and woman.
Result - Sexes.
The Decision Maker - Laws of Evolution.
Let there be tools for better hunting, defense and survival.
Result - Power over other species and less equipped felow humans.
The Decision Maker - Scared human.
Let there be curiosity to understand the universe better.
Result - Science that built intellectual capacities.
The Decision Maker - Curious human.
Let us loot and occupy other's territories for better resources.
Result - Wars that shifted physical powers.
The Decision Maker - Power-hungry human.
Let us select our representatives to run our territories.
Result - Democracy that differentiated the ruling from the ruled.
The Decision Maker - Rationalist human.
Let us use natural resources to generate artificial resources for a better life.
Result - Industrial Revolution that shifted economic powers.
The Decision Maker - Smart human.
Let us work relentlessly to built those artificial resources and get rewarded proportionately.
Result - Job based economy that differentiated skilled from the unskilled.
The Decision Maker - Optimist human.
Rather than loot, let us exchange our resources with others'.
Result - Trade that shifted financial powers.
The Decision Maker - Visionary human.
Let us own nothing and divide the resources among the community.
Result - Communism.
The Decision Maker - Confused human.
Let us make more money. Where's the need? Let us generate needs.
Result - Capitalism.
The Decision Maker - Shrewd human.
Let us generate intelligent machines that'll reduce human effort and build better resources.
Result - Computing revolution that shifted intellectual powers.
The Decision Maker - Visionary human.
Going Into the Future
peace become the order of the day...
there be joy...
there be no discrimination...
curiosity never end...
there be light....
"Gentlemen, you can't fight in here! This is the war room!"
Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964).